One of the main problems of getting about in a wheelchair is coming up
against a flight of steps or a stairway where there is no alternative
means of ascending to the level those steps lead to. This is alleviated
by the installation of a wheelchair stair lift in those places where it
is possible to do so and there are no possibilities for fitting an
elevator for the purpose. So this article takes a look at using these
great accessibility devices for wheelchair users.
Their use is pretty simple by design because they need to be easily used
by anyone in a wheelchair who is unaided. Making them difficult would
just bar many from using them, so they were made easy so just about
anyone can figure them out in no time at all and be riding up or down
the stairs in comfort ad safety without nay trouble at all. But if you
were wondering what these handicap lifts are all about and how to use
them, then here is a quick primer.
They operate along the stairs on a rail that is fixed either to the
stair risers themselves or the wall side for stability and strength.
There is a platform that rests in a vertical position when it's not
being used so everyone who can walk okay can use the stairs. When a
wheelchair user needs to use the lift, they simply power it up with a
simple button and the platform swings down to a horizontal position so
you can just roll on. There is generally some kind of locking mechanism
that stops the wheelchair from moving when it's in place. You then just
move a lever to go up or down and ride the stairs until you get top the
other end. The locking mechanism is released and you simply roll off.
Some models will power themselves off after the ride is over and the
platform will automatically swing back to its vertical position once the
wheelchair is safely off, Others have to be powered off manually but
these are more usually found in homes rather than in public areas, where
the automatic models are more suited. If the platform is at the other
end of the stairs when you want to use it, when you hit the power up
button, from where you are, it knows it has to come down (or up) to meet
you before the platform swings down into its riding position.
That's about the long and the short of it of how these handicapped
wheelchair lifts work and how a wheelchair user can user them easily,
wherever they are. Hope this helps!
One of the great joys of traveling is getting to see places you haven't
seen before and for most folks, that is a great pleasure to be taken
whenever you have the time and ability. But when you are confined to a
wheelchair, things take on a different aspect altogether. More planning
needs to be done, especially if you're planning to go anywhere long
distance by plane, or even if you are traveling on a train or bus, you
need to get things prepared beforehand to save on all the hassles when
the time comes to go.
One essential item that I can't do without when I travel is my very
portable, lightweight folding wheelchair. It has a load of advantages
over my static framed chair for traveling, although there are some
disadvantages and the reason why I simply don't just use it all the time.
The advantages are the things that make traveling when you are a person
with disabilities more enjoyable, at least that is as far as it is
possible when, you know, its not as straight forward as it is for able
bodied folks. But the main thing is that be being a folding frame, the
chair folds up into an almost flat package that is easy to store on a
plane or other means of transport where space is at a premium. Being
lightweight, it lends itself to being picked up and carried by airline
staff without them breaking their backs over a heavy framed chair. It
gets you some nice smiles and you know they appreciate your
thoughtfulness at coming in one!
On top of that, they are lighter than usual so are easy to push around
unaided in necessary, or they make for a happier helper who has to push
you! So these lightweight wheelchairs sound absolutely perfect and so
far you'd wonder why anyone would bother with heavy, rigid framed
wheelchairs any more?
Well, there is a downside and that's the lack of good padding. To cut
down on weight and to make the chair fold away really as small as it can
be, the padding is pretty spartan, which is okay if you only need to use
the chair to get from the taxi to the airport, from the check-in to the
departure lounge and then from there onto the plane etc. But for
anything longer, you backside will start to go numb, not to mention your
back and your arms from resting on very thinly padded armrests.
So there is always a sacrifice to be made someplace and I guess comfort
has to go for the sake of portability. But I can cope with that for all
the benefits of these lightweight
wheelchairs just as long as I can sit in a comfy chair in between
moving around and I get to have a nice hot bath at the end of the